Coupe du monde de rugby 2023 : « Face à Antoine Dupont, tu es comme un impala », s’amuse Santiago Arata avant France-Uruguay

l’essentielAs French and Uruguayan players meet on Thursday, September 14th, Castres player Santiago Arata discusses the influence that Antoine Dupont (resting for the match) can have on an opposing number 9.

Il a beau évoluer dans le même championnat qu’Antoine Dupont, Santiago Arata savoure toujours autant ces moments où il croise le numéro 9 tricolore sur le terrain. L’Uruguayen, qui espérait tant affronter le Toulousain durant cette Coupe du monde, devra encore patienter avant de ferrailler à nouveau avec lui puisque Dupont a été laissé au repos par Fabien Galthié pour la rencontre face aux Sud-Américains ce soir.

A lire aussi : Coupe du monde de rugby 20223 : la Marseillaise « classique » ou une version chantée par des enfants ? Les Bleus ont choisi

However, every time these two have faced each other, the player from Castres has come out stronger. « I have had the chance to win against him, but also to lose. I have been following him for a long time, I really like his explosive playing style. I learn a lot from watching him, it gives you areas for improvement because, simply put, he is the best in the world in this position. He is someone that I truly respect, » acknowledges Arata.

A lire aussi : Coupe du monde de rugby 2023 : « Ses valeurs l’ont aidé à revenir… » Le père d’Anthony Jelonch raconte l’éducation reçue par le Gersois

« You are impressed, but it is motivating. »

Challenging this kind of extraordinary rugby player is never insignificant and inevitably disrupts a certain preparation routine. « You do everything, during the week, in the best possible way. That’s what I had done before the Top 14 semi-final in Nice (24-18). Because what you want is to enjoy a match against him by delivering your best performance, » says the Uruguayan, who had indeed been dazzling in Nice just over a year ago.

A lire aussi : VIDEO. Coupe du monde de rugby 2023 : le XV de France a effectué en train son déplacement jusqu’à Lille pour y affronter l’Uruguay

Preparing is one thing. The match is another. And playing against Dupont is like adding an extra mental burden, according to the scrum-half of CO: « You already wonder how you will react when it starts. You are impressed, but it motivates you. You have to be alert throughout the game. In fact, it’s a bit like when an impala is being chased by a lion: it has eyes everywhere. » Being ready to pounce at any movement.